Davenport Highlights Field in Strasbourg
STRASBOURG, France - An impressive field highlights the 18th running of the Internationaux de Strasbourg, with three of the world's Top 20 players embarking onto Strasbourg. Three time defending champion Silvia Farina Elia is obviously quite at home in Strasbourg. Her career three WTA Tour singles titles have all been won in Strasbourg, winning the title the past three consecutive years dating
back to 2001.
No.3 seed Farina Elia is coming off a strong week in Rome, making her first appearance in her home country's quarterfinals. Previously contesting the tournament for 15 years, Farina Elia broke through this year to reach the round of eight. She defeated Meghann Shaughnessy and Maria Sharapova en route and brings an uplifted sense of confidence into Strasbourg.
World No.4 Lindsay Davenport serves as the top seed, making her first appearance on the European clay court circuit. Davenport has not played since falling in the quarterfinals to Patty Schnyder in Charleston. She has already won one title on clay this season, defeating Amelie Mauresmo to claim the Amelia Island title. Davenport comes into Strasbourg preparing for Roland Garros and sporting an impressive 7-1 win-loss record on clay for the season thus far.
Japan's Ai Sugiyama holds the No.2 seeded slot, looking to return to the form she displayed at the beginning of the year. Sugiyama won the first title of the year at Gold Coast and has reached the semifinals of Dubai, but has since been unable to surpass the third round. Sugiyama will face the winner of countrywoman Akiko Morigami and Switzerland's Timea Bacsinszky.
No.4 seed Emilie Loit showcases some of the strongest play thus far in the clay court season. Loit won her first career title in Casablanca and followed up with a second consecutive title at Estoril. She currently holds an 11 match win streak and is returning to the Tour since winning in Estoril.